Carleton, William (1812–1865)

By: Cora Carleton Glassford

Type: Biography

Published: 1952

Updated: December 1, 1994

William Carleton, early settler, participant in the Texas Revolution, and journalist, was born in Taunton, England, on May 7, 1812. After receiving a medical education he married Elizabeth Martha Coxhead on August 1, 1833. With his wife, an infant, and three servants, he traveled to Texas in January 1835. They remained in the little settlement around Texana during the heated months just before the Texas Revolution. Alarmed by reports of military advances from Mexico, Carleton joined the Matagorda Volunteers in March. At Goliad a unit of the command was sent to attack the Mexican fort at Lipantitlán, and Carleton performed valiant service in the attack. In the few days that the colonists stayed in the vicinity, some of the men slept in a shed filled with damp cotton, and from this Carleton supposedly developed a serious case of inflammatory rheumatism, for which he was invalided back to Texana. Late in 1836 he and his wife went to New Orleans, and twenty years passed before they returned to Texas. Carlton worked for a time on Galveston and Houston newspapers but eventually settled in Austin. For his loyal services at Goliad, the Texas legislature passed a special act that gave him his bounty lands. He sold them, bought presses, and established his own weekly paper, the Austin Rambler. Carleton died in Austin on November 2, 1865, and was buried in Oakwood Cemetery. He was survived by three sons and two daughters.

Daughters of the Republic of Texas, Founders and Patriots of the Republic of Texas (Austin, 1963-). Lorraine Bruce Jeter, Matagorda: Early History (Baltimore: Gateway, 1974). Villamae Williams, Stephen F. Austin's Register of Families (Nacogdoches, Texas: Ericson, 1984).
  • Journalism
  • Newspapers
  • Publishers and Executives
  • Peoples
  • English
  • Writers, Authors, Publications, and Literature
  • Authors and Writers
  • Military
  • Soldiers

The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this entry.

Cora Carleton Glassford, “Carleton, William,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed May 18, 2022,

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

December 1, 1994